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In the 2017 Short New Play Festival, eight brand-new plays written in response to the theme "delusions of grandeur" receive performances as staged readings. Every year, the Short New Play Festival presents work featuring heightened language and classical themes. This year, six plays — by Charlotte Ahlin, Uriah Celaya, Justin Halle, Rachel Leopold, Jason Gray Platt, and Christian Simonsen — were selected through an open submission process. Two more plays were commissioned, one from Arthur Kopit (Oh Dad, Poor Dad, Mamma's Hung You in the Closet and I'm Feelin' So Sad) and the other from Dael Orlandersmith (Beauty's Daughter).
He smells bad. He looks good!
This rollicking musical tells the tale of Backbeard, the hairiest pirate who ever lived, and his quest to answer the question "How should a pirate look?" When a rowdy birthday party ruins his clothes, a pair of persuasive tailors convince him to try a vibrant new outfit of patterned trousers, a colorful coat, and a pig. Now the fearsome pirate must face his greatest challenges: winning the acceptance of the Pirate Council, the townspeople, and even his own crew, in a high-spirited story of courage, acceptance, and standing up for who you are.
Before Liberace entered the world of glitz and glamour, the legendary showman crossed paths with history's most notorious gangster and his girlfriend, forming a unique bond. Featuring a lavish original score, this world premiere musical explores the phantasmagorical life of the iconic performer and his nearly career-shattering struggle to maintain privacy with respect to his sexual orientation. Friendship, love, and the quest for redemption play out for one of showbiz's most unique trios in the telling of this remarkable story.
The Body Politic follows Iphis, a transgender man from Afghanistan, who emigrates to North Carolina at the height of the Afghan War. As his LBGT social circle collides with the traditional American family, this explosive new musical exposes the daily bigotry facing the trans community, and the divisive prejudices of the post-9/11 world. The Body Politic made worldwide headlines last year when it was presented at the North Carolina General Assembly in response to the state's discriminatory "bathroom bill," House Bill 2.
In 897 A.D., Pope Stephen VII dug up the rotting corpse of his predecessor, Pope Formosus, and placed it on trial in front of the entire Roman Senate, clergy, and aristocracy. After screaming at it for hours, Stephen had the body dismembered, disrobed, and thrown in the Tiber River. Why would he do this? Come see composer-lyricist Robbie Florian's answer to that question! Brought to life with a sensuous mix of pope-punk, Catholic pop, and inarguably melodic ecclesiastical mandible-flappings, the trial of the ninth century awaits you.
A New Musical about Sex, God, and Summer Camp.
Camp Wanatachi is an electro-musical that explores two girls' journey of sexual discovery within the unlikely setting of an all-female Christian summer camp. Spirit-soaked and hormone-charged, this "hilariously subversive piece of theater" (New York Magazine) celebrates teenage love with pulsing EDM beats and lush orchestral arrangements.
"It defies all expectations of both coming-of-age tales and musicals. The result is refreshing and uplifting." —TimeOut NY
A new rock opera.
An audience-immersive rock-opera experience, The Demise is a cross between Alice in Wonderland, The Wiz, and Dante's Inferno. The show pushes the boundaries between reality and theater, making an audience member the star of the show. Exploring themes of isolation and the quest for inspiration in the midst of personal despair, The Demise ultimately celebrates the beautiful, complex nature of our world.
What if the Buddha were a woman, living in our times? Mama Sid is a modern-day "awakened one" with a worldwide following. But a determined young woman seeks to unearth Mama Sid's mysterious past, exposing secrets that could change everything. Epic and intimate, comic and profound, The Fourth Messenger investigates what it means to be both enlightened and human. Matt August (Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas!) directs; the ravishing score is by indie favorite Vienna Teng.
Freedom Riders: The Civil Rights Musical tells the true story of activists who boldly challenged the legality and optics of the Jim Crow South by riding buses in mixed groups. It features Civil Rights icons Diane Nash, John Seigenthaler, John Lewis, Congress of Racial Equality's original 13 riders, and other fearless activists of the Civil Rights Movement. Freedom Riders is a soaring portrait of the fearless voices of the Movement who used nonviolent direct action to initiate change.
The Fresh Fruit Festival is a New York summer arts festival featuring quality work of LGBTQ artists.
His family, his friends, his secrets...all get left behind.
At age 15 Milo Reynolds had it all - a seat at the popular table, the perfect girlfriend, the "coolest" parents, and friends who worshiped him. So when Milo takes his own life on Monday morning, his friends and family are left questioning everything they thought they knew about him. Generation Me explores the heartbreak, confusion, and survivor's guilt of those left behind. Told in flashbacks that open Milo's story like a mystery, Generation Me identifies a generation more privileged, self-interested, oblivious...and lonelier than ever.
He's the most famous man you've never heard of.
In the 1850s John Banvard did more to elevate fine arts than any single American artist before him. Banvard was the most famous living painter in the world and the first millionaire artist, world-renowned for his three-mile long moving panorama celebrating the majesty of the Mighty Mississippi. Today an examination of reference books will not turn up a single mention of his name. John Banvard, the greatest artist of his time, has been utterly obliterated by history. This musical tells his story.
Goodbye Buddy is a dark comedy about a woman sentenced to death and what happens when two guards discover they're all out of ways to kill her. But when the execution goes awry, Buddy develops a relationship with one of the guards in an attempt to stay alive. Along the way, Buddy discovers the reason for her imprisonment, plays the free pass game, and even sings some Billy Joel. Beyond the debauchery, Goodbye Buddy is a play about the absurdity of government, finding friends in the most unlikely of places, and confronting death.
The year is 1938, and the Goree All-Girl String Band is the biggest new radio sensation in Texas. Its members also happen to be convicted criminals. The six of them teach themselves music from behind bars and earn a slot on a prison-based radio program. Through sisterhood, determination, and a little bit of luck, these women work (and play) together to fiddle their way to freedom. Inspired by a true story, The Goree All-Girl String Band is a tale of redemption that features an ensemble of actor-musicians performing a brand-new country score.
There's a brand new world waiting for us all.
Happily Ever High is the #1 preparatory school for fairy tale youth. At the beginning of their education, students are assigned specific storybook roles such as Prince, Princess, Knight, or Fairy Godmother. According to their parents and teachers, finding 'happily ever after' means learning how to slay dragons or waiting idly by until someone rescues you from your tower. As graduation approaches, members of the senior class begin to realize that maybe their happiness isn't found at the end of a storybook.
How The Light Gets In is a new concert presentation of micro-musicals – 30 minutes or less – commissioned by NYMF (with support from The ASCAP Foundation and Jan Brandt), in an effort to create more space for arts-based civic engagement in our Festival.
Directed by Jonathan McCrory (National Black Theatre) and co-curated by Zhailon Levingston (Broadway Advocacy Coalition), participating artists include: Ty Defoe and Tidtaya Sinutoke with Water Is Life; Lelund Durond Thompson and Jason Michael Webb with Ilathi: The Gift; and Ryan Scott Oliver and Nessie Nankivell with Otherbody. A moderated conversation with artists discussing the process of developing their micro-musicals will follow the concert.
There's no re-wind button on the DVR of life.
As the owners of Party City Now rebrand their wedding business to embrace marriage equality, Dave, their gay Music Director, has never felt more alone. Doomed to a life of playing weddings, Dave longs for a love of his own. But, when he's forced to sing a duet with Human Rights Attorney, Harris, sparks ignite and hope is born. As three diverse couples struggle to find compromise, this new romantic musical comedy I Am, I Will, I Do teaches us that perhaps being "outside the norm" is the new normal.
Weed lube, throuple therapy & one life-altering text message. With an open mind, heart, and vagina, Mindy Raf demolishes the romantic comedy and the roles we play in it. As Raf demystifies love, loss, and sexuality, she engages her vulnerable, razor-sharp storytelling style to face the complexities of modern love and leave us asking, "Could I ever do that?"
Take that first step...
Stinging from old and recent loss, childhood neighbors Sam and Lindsay reunite by chance on Seattle's light rail. As they begin to fall in love, they slowly learn that healing can be found in the most unusual places, and in other people just as broken as themselves. In this original contemporary musical by Kira Stone, innovative movement and music combine to depict the realities of people living with mental illness, and the power we all have to live imperfectly and beautifully.
New York's oldest continuing theater festival will present 100 plays in 23 days. Quality new and exciting theatre works: plays, musicals, solo acts, cabarets, improv, 10-minute plays.
The New York Musical Festival (NYMF) nurtures the creation, production, and public presentation of stylistically, thematically, and culturally diverse new musicals to ensure the future vitality of musical theater. In 2013, NYMF received a Drama Desk Award for its efforts. This year's festival features everything from an adaptation of The Picture of Dorian Gray to a musical about Backbeard, the hairiest pirate ever. For a full list of 2017 NYMF shows, click the link below.
Three young men visit the legendary Stonewall Inn for a birthday celebration. With hopes of fixing a broken relationship between Corey and Bryan, a new friend enters who takes an interest in joining them in the birthday bash. Corey's secret birthday gift to himself has more in store than he bargained for. A Night at Stonewall is a short, powerful play about love, awareness, and the consequences of living in a society of app-based hookups.
Note: This show contains some nudity and is for mature audiences. Also, A Night at Stonewall is part of the Strawberry One-Act Festival. Viewers will see three plays in addition to this production. They will vote for the two best plays, directors, and actors from all the shows they see.
Try to run! Try to hide! Someone lurks in the night tide...
Inspired by the B-movie of the same title, Night Tide tells the kitschy and compelling tale of Johnny Drake, a lonely Naval sailor. While enjoying his first shore leave in a spooky, run-down seaside resort town, he meets Mora, a seductive and mysterious young woman who performs as a mermaid in the sideshow. Johnny immediately becomes smitten with Mora, but he soon discovers that she may actually be a real siren of the sea, and she may have lured her previous boyfriends to their watery graves...
The [almost] all-girl math challenge!
Numbers Nerds is an almost all-girl high school math team from Waukesha, Wisconsin. The team has won the Regional Math Competition and is chosen to compete in the National Math SUM-IT. These smart and funny whiz kids must unite to solve difficult math problems without getting distracted by teen drama and pressures. It is a story of girls becoming women, conquering both anxiety and rivalry, finding a way to affirm themselves both as individuals and as team-members, so they can win at math…and at life!
New kid Kylie Carson is "different" — which can make middle school a very scary and unfriendly place. So she cooks up a sweet solution: form a cupcake club that's open to anyone seeking friendship and a place to belong. But the popular clique turns bitter with jealousy and vows to destroy the club's efforts. Kylie is now faced with a tough choice: stoop to the mean girls' level or take the higher road. The delicious pop-infused score by Rick Hip-Flores brings the best-selling children's book by Sheryl and Carrie Berk to life, and drives home a message of empathy, love, and the power of young people to change the world.
Note: This production will support NoBully.org.
In the fiercely competitive world of girls' soccer, how far would you go for your child? Based on the award-winning play All About the Kids by Caytha Jentis, Play Like a Winner is a satire of the soccer mom world. At curtain, Coach Nick lies dead in the middle of the stage, impaled by a corner flag, while a chorus of soccer players sings in his honor. Kathy, a soccer mom, steps forward to tell viewers the story of how all this began…
The Plurality of Privacy Project in Five-Minute Plays (P3M5) is a transatlantic theater project initiated to explore the value of privacy. In cooperation with the Goethe-Institut Washington, theaters across the United States and Europe have commissioned playwrights to write five-minute plays themed around the question, "What does privacy mean to you in the digital age?" The results are being presented in different formats by a network of theaters between January 2017 and June 2018. These performances, staged readings, and community forums create an artistic and cultural dialogue centered around varying American and European understandings of privacy.
Note: Performance dates and locations vary. For more information, visit the Goethe-Institut website (URL below).
A tale of hope and courage.
A young refugee girl arrives penniless and alone in what appears to be the most frightening place on earth, Qing Cheng – the Dark City. Follow Ahn's journey as the harrowing becomes habitable, and hope and humanity triumph in a dangerous city. Based on the real-life Kowloon Walled City just outside of Hong Kong, this uniquely Chinese/American musical offers up a timely exploration of the refugee experience.
This two-week festival brings together student ensembles from all five boroughs of New York City and Pennsylvania. Students develop their artistic skills in workshops led by working artists by day, and by night perform their own original works. Each evening culminates in a collaborative piece devised by all ensembles involved, intended to represent the group and their experience within REBEL VERSES Youth Arts Festival. Each performance night, which also features a celebrity performer, is comprised of six to eight 10- to 15-minute performances by a combination of youth performing arts organizations from New York City and beyond.
In the 42 years of the Off-Off Broadway Short Play Festival, over 500 theater companies and schools have participated. Participants have included companies from across the country as well as from Canada, Singapore, and the United Kingdom. The festival offers a prize of publication and licensing for six short plays in Samuel French's notable Off-Off Broadway Short Play Festival series. In addition, the 24 semifinalists each receive a full production in one of New York City's leading off-Broadway theaters.
Energetic and innovative, The Shakespearean Jazz Show reinvigorates and recontextualizes Shakespearean performance. Experience how the loose, improvisatory nature of jazz music can free Shakespearean text, allowing the feeling and intent of the words to be expressed in a completely new way. The Nine Worthies provide an unforgettable parade of Shakespearean sonnets, songs, and scenes composed to original New Orleans-style jazz. Don't miss your chance to enjoy the playful antics and soulful music live in The Shakespearean Jazz Show!
Canada's most acclaimed theater company makes its New York City debut with a monthlong festival of award-winning works, featuring outstanding plays, musicals, concerts, and cabarets.
The award-winning Riant Theatre proudly presents NYC's Strawberry One-Act Festival, their renowned short play competition celebrating cultural diversity in the performing arts. Now in its 30th season, The Strawberry One-Act Festival will also include limited engagements for three premiere full-length one-act plays.
Featuring 31 new short plays received through submission from across the country, the competition uses a playoff-style with audience voting determining semi-finalists, who receive help from an industry coach before the finals, competing for the chance for a development and publication deal with The Riant Theatre.
Summer Shorts 2017 is an annual festival of six short plays tailor-made for summer viewing, now celebrating its 11th season. This year's installment features new one-act plays from Chris Cragin-Day, Lindsey Kraft and Andrew Leeds, Neil LaBute, Academy Award winner Graham Moore (making his playwriting debut!), Melissa Ross, and multi-Emmy Award winner Alan Zweibel.
Temple of the Souls is an award-winning contemporary pop musical of secrets, lies, and forbidden love. Two worlds collide in this mythical tale when Amada, the beautiful daughter of a conquistador, and Guario, a young Taino, meet in a magical Puerto Rican rain forest. To escape the intolerant world below, the young lovers run away to the Temple of the Souls, where nightmares and dreams come true.
Dixon Place proudly presents the 26th Annual HOT! Festival, the NYC annual celebration of LGBTQ culture featuring over 100 artists. Headlining the festival is transgender actor and comedian D'Lo's solo work To T, or Not to T, a hilariously intimate reflection on taking t(estosterone) and his experiences transitioning. In this work, D'Lo takes on over 15 characters and fuses spoken word, stand-up comedy, theatre, film, and music production, drawing on his journey as a transgender Sri Lankan-American.
Hailed as "The best LBGTQ Theater Festival in New York" by The Village Voice, the HOT! Festival continues its celebration this year July 5th to August 3rd.
The festival is comprised of two programs.
Program A: Doors of Perception, by Cara Hall, uses a seemingly familiar tale of hubris gone horribly wrong to make us think about the lens through which we view tabloid events. Daughters of the Evolution, by Rae Binstock, brings together a rowdy group of disparate women from across time and space to engage in the essential political question of today: "What do women want"? Holly Hepp-Galván's comedy Sex With Robots is about a boy, a sex toy, and a greedy mom. The future is already here!
Program B: Kendra Augustin's The Call of the Void is a fresh contemplation of the true cost of domestic violence. Alisa Zhulina's hilarious Sublet is an express journey to NYC roommate hell fueled by outsized artistic ambition. Oh My, Goodness, a profound gem by Cayenne Douglass inspired by a real event, ends the program on a hopeful note as one small act of kindness leads to a big transformation for a woman who has reached the end of the road.
Sometimes the answer we don't want to hear is the answer that will save us; in his silence, can you hear him?
"This show shares an important message regarding life and the choices we make when we hit our lowest points and how our decisions impact those around us." – Sean O'Shea, director
What is the price of liberty, and will the wall divide or unite this family? A Wall Apart tells the story of three brothers in East Berlin. With scars from one war, they face another as the Berlin Wall divides their city — East from West. One an officer, another an artist, and the third caught in the middle, these brothers experience the building of the wall, each from a personal perspective. As they strive to find their way together, three generations of family ties, brotherhood, love, marriage, and parenthood are tested.
A Wall Apart is an original rock musical with music by Graham Russell of Air Supply and a book by Sam Goldstein and Craig Clyde. Directed and choreographed by Keith Andrews, the show features a cast including Maddie Shea Baldwin (Bright Star), Leslie Becker (Wicked), Emily Behny (The Fantasticks), Jordan Bondurant (A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder), Darren Ritchie (Thoroughly Modern Millie), Matt Rosell (Les Misérables), and Josh Tolle (Kinky Boots national tour).
Join us for our concert series that celebrates female, queer, and trans* artists who are changing the landscape of musical theater. Featuring dynamic sounds and incredible performers, this concert has become such a staple of the Festival, that we'll be presenting two separate line-ups to showcase even more talent! Featured artists include Lynn Ahrens, Carmel Dean, Maggie-Kate Coleman & Erato A. Kremmyda, Amanda Green, and Zoe Sarnak.